Sunday, December 14, 2014

Life, Going On

These days, many friends know that my sister Jerol, who is the last survivor of the three sisters who were on this earth when I was born, sustained traumatic brain injuries in a fall on November 15, 2014, and has been mostly unconscious ever since.

Heartache over her condition has kept me away from the blogosphere for a few weeks...until now.

Jerol opened her eyes yesterday, for the first time since November 15, and obeyed simple verbal commands.

This is major.  Major for Jerol, major for the family, and major for me, as it will perhaps start to dissipate the black cloud of despair I've been carrying around inside me since November 15.  I'm planning to drive to Lake Katrine to see Jerol again as soon as I can, bearing an I-Pod loaded with fifties hits, the better to spark those synapses. 

Meanwhile, I feel I can let out my breath and take the time to show you what I've been doing while worrying about Jerol:

I finished this piece, which I'm calling Fragile Ties.  This is my first foray into two new techniques:  collage quilting and thread painting.  I find both processes absorbing and challenging

This piece is part of an exhibit at the Hartford Public Library, presented by the CT Fiber Arts Collective, which was just hung the other day.  The show honors the library's recent acquisition of two large collages by African-American artist Romare Bearden and takes as its twin themes jazz and  the civil rights movement.

Here's Linda Martin with her stunning portrait of Martin Luther King, which she also did in the collage style

Christina Blais with pieced letters

Here are all but three of the members of the CtFiber Arts Collective at the Hartford Public Library.  L-r Carol Vinick, Linda Martin, Karen Loprete, Diane Cadrain, Christina Blais, Antonia Torres and Rosalind Spann.  Missing:  Carol Eaton, Mary Lachman, Wanda Seldon.

Everybody is invited to the opening, Saturday January 17 from 1 to 3 p.m.

What else is happening?  Our daughters have brought some new significant others into our family, and those important people will be with us for Christmas, so of course they must have Christmas stockings. I went to Pier One and bought a couple of handsome ones, but then I had second thoughts about the price tags.  So I decided to make a pattern from one of them, return them to the store, and make my own homemade versions.

So I did.

I laid the stocking out on some lightweight nonwoven material printed with a 1" grid.

I found some fabric in my stash and used that pattern to make these stockings:

 The one on the right is herringbone wool with a silk cuff. The one on the left is made of home decorator fabric.

They're both lined.  I hope you're impressed.

Outside our house, Joe Rubin put some holiday decorations up today:

I give him a lot of credit because he wasn't feeling very well . He has a bit of a cold.  I don't know how he does it.  I must say I did hear him mutter "Poop!" as he did this.  But it wasn't "poop."

He's a mensch!

So, life has gone on, Jerol is getting better, stockings are made if not hung, the black cloud is dissipating, and happiness is leaking in.

Art, History and Social Activism: CtFAC Honors Romare Bearden

Date: On display December 17, 2014-March 13, 2015
Location: Downtown Library 3rd Floor Gallery

In honor of the recent arrival of two spectacular Romare Bearden murals at Hartford Public Library, The Connecticut Fiber Arts Collective (CtFAC) presents a special exhibit that pays homage to the stylistic works of Bearden, his commitment to civil rights and his contributions to the African-American jazz and art communities. CtFAC has created a collection of works in textiles, fiber, mixed media and surface design celebrating and recognizing one of the greatest visual artists of the 20th century.

A special reception to meet the artists of CtFAC will be held on January 17, 2015, 1:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m. in the 3rd floor Hartford History Center. This event is free and open to the public. - See more at:

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